Unpacking Universal Medicine episode 5 – influence & commitmentPosted: May 30, 2018
Universal Medicine is marketed as an esoteric healing organization and religious community, but religious fervour is only one of the factors keeping followers aligned with its commercial Way of the Livingness. (UPDATE: UM made their fourth bogus copyright infringement complaint about the videos in this series to get them taken down temporarily from YouTube. In the meantime, watch the the intro and other four episodes on this playlist – the material UM doesn’t want the public to see.)
Episode 5 – influence, faith and commitment
Most of UM’s subscribers are zealous adherents to its beliefs and rituals and fiery defenders of the corporation. They enter an extended cycle of expenditure on questionable products and services, repeatedly attend events year after year, and provide unpaid services to a commercial business that has made its proprietor Serge Benhayon a multimillionaire. Outsiders struggle to understand why.
UM has developed a culture of persuasion that includes a system of rewards and punishments, repetitive group rituals, and a number of high status persuaders. As followers aspirations increase, so do their levels of commitment. It results in a lot of talk and propaganda, and ‘love’ and conscientiousness theatrics, but the ‘community’ is a bell jar in which nothing much happens thats meaningful.
Bogus copyright complaints
UM and its contractors, The Co-Creative (Rebecca and Simon Asquith, Jonathan Baldwin and Clayton Lloyd) have had all the films in this series taken down temporarily with false copyright infringement complaints. In Australia it is an offence under the Commonwealth Copyright Act to make groundless complaints of copyright infringement. One of the reasons false complaints are unlawful is because Australian legislators recognize that complaints processes are abused to censor public interest material.
UM and The Co-Creative need to be warned that my legal team has grown and I now have solicitors with a strong record in defamation and human rights representing me. We are prepared to seek injunctions with costs if UM attempt more bogus takedown requests.
A health warning
Loved ones of people involved in UM, particularly those with children caught up in it have been shocked and appalled by what they’ve seen in the subscription videos.
It may be upsetting to some of you. It’s good for others to know they’re not alone in their misgivings so please feel free to comment. I’m pretty busy with legal stuff but you can always contact me if you’re having a hard time. I think it’s time we set something up so that you can speak with others who understand what it’s like to deal with UM in your life.
We have readers who are former UM followers and many readers with loved ones involved, so I’d like commenters to remember that when they comment. The majority of UM community members are decent and well intentioned people. Unfortunately they’re ensnared in a large scale and elaborate deception.
The films prove that UM deserves a lot more criticism than it’s had. One of the most confronting things about this mess is that many of UM’s well intentioned members are participating in the organization’s deceptive, exploitative and otherwise lousy conduct. It’s heartbreaking for all involved. It causes massive problems. Please be sensitive that many readers feel a mixture of emotions about this stuff, including grief. It doesn’t help to rub their noses in it. Criticism of UM is deserved but we don’t want to alienate anyone whose been done over or deter readers from commenting either.
Using and sharing
Feel free to share the videos. They are useful for notifying community organizations, schools or other institutions about UM and its promoters.
I daresay a number of you will be able to use this material in dealing with the Family Court. The episodes include some persuasive material for keeping kids away from this group. Contact me for assistance.
Tips for commenters
It’s helpful to me and other commenters if you identify time signatures within the videos if you want to comment on any particular statement or segment. You’ll see there’s a lot to comment on.
Comments are moderated for legal reasons. Unfortunately what reasonable people call ‘the bleeding obvious’, UM and its invested lawyers call ‘defamation’. However, the Australian legal system is such that taking a defence of truth to trial takes years, enormous costs, and otherwise the moving of mountains.
If some of your descriptions get modified, you know why.